Jeff council handles urban renewal plans, looks at year-end financial summary

Post includes live link to city financial summary

The Jefferson city council held two public hearings at which no one spoke and approved an amendment to the city’s urban renewal plan and a development agreement with Jefferson Veterinary Clinic, L.C.

The action was taken at the council’s regular meeting Tuesday.
The amendment to the urban renewal plan was necessary to enter into the agreement with veterinarian Mark Peters, doing business as Jefferson Veterinary Clinic. He is constructing  a new, larger clinic east of Super 8 on Gallup Road along Highway 30. Adding the property to the urban renewal plan allows the city to give Peters a property tax rebate via tax increment financing of up to $100,000 over seven years. The development agreement stipulates that Peters must run the facility as a veterinary clinic for the term of the agreement.

The council also approved a joint agreement with Greene County for the establishment of the Beaver Creek Wind Farm urban renewal plan. The city’s participation is needed because the property now owned by the Greene County school district as the site of the future high school and regional career academy is within the city limits. County zoning coordinator Chuck Wenthold reminded the council that TIF revenues derived from the urban renewal area will be used for the career academy and future Greene County road projects.

The council approved a purchase amount not to exceed $35,000 for a cover for the municipal pool. The exact cost of the cover is unknown, as the vendor whose product and price was discussed earlier this month has since declined to manufacture that large of a cover.

Jefferson park and recreation director Vicky Lautner provided the council another bid that is about $2,000 more than the other vendor’s. It’s not certain that the pool liner approved by the council at its Oct. 13 meeting will be installed before winter. By approving the purchase of the cover at a “not to exceed” cost, the council hopes to lock in a price that will be valid next fall should the liner not be installed until spring.

The council approved a resolution allowing for the $86,000 cost of the pool liner to be reimbursed to the city’s general fund with revenue from a future bond issue.

The council approved the third reading of ordinances to increase water and sewer rates by 3 percent. Customers will see the increase on their Dec. 30 city services bills.

Council member Matt Gordon voted against the increase, as he did on the first two readings. He also voted against the purchase of the pool cover.

The council approved a resolution proclaiming Nov. 4-10 as Organ, Tissue and Bone Marrow Donor Awareness Week in Jefferson. The recognition was organized by MeLinda Madison Millard, a co-founder with Arthur Hardman of A Token of Love non-profit organization. According to the proclamation, written by Madison Millard and read by mayor Craig Berry, 144 persons are added to the list of those needing transplants every day.

The council spent a brief time reviewing financial summaries for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018. In the general fund, revenue exceed the budget projection by $187,000 while expenses exceeded the budget projection by $58,600.

Police department revenue was more twice what was projected due to more tickets being written and charges collected via the new impound lot. Revenues were projected at $23,350 and totaled $61,858. Expenses were 14 percent higher, budgeted at $643,100 and coming in at $735,900. City administrator Mike Palmer said the increase was due to paying for three officers to attend the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy.

Revenues in the city’s enterprise funds (water, sewer, sanitation, recycling and airport) finished the year at 93.2 percent of budget; expenses totaled 94.6 percent of budget.
Click here to see the financial summary.

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